Do I need a visa for Greece after Brexit?
British people moving to Greece since Brexit are not classed as ‘third-country nationals’ just like the many Americans and other non-EU nationals who make this wonderful country their long-term home.
There are several visa options, depending on your personal situation. These visas will not only give you freedom to stay in Greece long term but will also grant you free movement throughout the whole Schengen Zone.
In this article, we will go into each Greek visa in detail.
Greek visas for non-EU citizens
Independent financial means (National D visa)
The independent financial means visa is a popular option for non-EU citizens looking to reside, but not work, in Greece. Common demographic groups who apply for this visa include retirees and remote workers.
The independent financial means visa is relatively easy to obtain. You just need to prove you can financially support yourself without needing to work in Greece.
Along with the legal right to live in Greece, the independent financial means visa also gives the holder free movement within the Schengen Zone.
The initial visa lasts for two years and can be renewed every two years. You can apply for the initial visa in the UK at the Greek consulate in London, Leeds, Belfast, Birmingham, Edinburgh or Glasgow.
The government does tend to prefer retirees for this visa (only because they are more likely to be able to financially support themselves without working), however, younger applicants can still apply. You may just have to answer a few more questions on how you plan to financially support yourself while living in Greece.
What are the requirements for the Greek independent financial means visa?
- You must deposit a minimum of €24,000 in a Greek bank account.
- You must be able to prove you earn a minimum of €2,000 each month from non-Greek income sources e.g., a pension or a salary from a company based outside of Greece or rental income from outside of Greece. This is increased by 20% if you are moving with your spouse and by 15% for each child.
- You must reside in Greece for at least six months of the year. Note that residing in Greece for 183 days or more will make you a Greek tax resident.
- You must have taken out private medical insurance before you apply.
Another option for non-EU citizens is the golden visa. This is an incredibly flexible visa that grants the right to reside in Greece in exchange for a property investment of at least €250,000. The Greek golden visa does not give you the right to work in the country, however.
Unlike the independent financial means visa, there are no minimum stay requirements. In addition, the visa will also cover your family and allow them to reside in Greece with you. This includes your spouse, any dependents up to the age of 21, your parents and even your parents-in-law!
And, of course, you will all be granted free movement within the Schengen Zone.
The golden visa lasts for five years but can be renewed. After seven years, you can apply for citizenship. You can apply for the initial visa either in Greece or in the UK by giving power of attorney to a Greek legal representative.
Note that you will need to prove you have taken out private medical insurance before you apply.
Other ways to obtain the Greek golden visa
While a property purchase of at least €250,000 is the most common method of obtaining the golden visa, there are other options.
- Sign a lease agreement with a hotel or tourist establishment for at least 10 years.
- Make a capital investment of at least €400,000 in a company registered in Greece.
- Make a €400,000 investment in Greek government bonds.
- Make a €400,000 investment in bonds or shares of real estate investment companies.
- Make a €400,000 deposit in a Greek bank.
- Make an €800,000 investment in corporate or government bonds.
Digital nomad visa
The Greece digital nomad visa is a relatively new visa, only announced in summer 2021.
The digital nomad visa (i.e., remote worker visa) allows non-EU citizens who work remotely for a company based outside of Greece or who are self-employed to reside in Greece.
The initial visa is valid for one year, but there is the option to renew it for a second year if you still meet the requirements.
Like the other Greek visas, holders of the digital nomad visa can enjoy free movement in the Schengen zone.
Similarly to the golden visa, the digital nomad visa allows you to add your family members to your application. This includes your spouse and any children under the age of 18.
What are the requirements for the Greek digital nomad visa?
- You must have a valid passport for the duration of your visa
- You must earn at least €3,500 per month from a company based overseas. This can be proved through bank statements, employment contracts or payslips
- You must be able to prove you work remotely
- Private medical insurance
- Proof of address in Greece
If you want to work for a Greek company, things get a little more complicated.
Greece does not have a standalone work visa. Instead, normal residence permits can include the right to work.
You must apply for a non-working visa first and then add on the right to work once in Greece. Your Greek employer will apply for the work permit on your behalf, so a job offer is a prerequisite